Rams won't have long-term success until they solidify offensive line

From ESPN - July 17, 2017

ESPN recently put together power rankings based on how each NFL team is positioned for these next three years. The Los Angeles Rams finished 28th. That is, um, not good. It's not good because, well, 28th is bad. It's really not good because of what these next three years represent for this franchise. Thanks to heavy rainfall in a city that never experiences heavy rainfall, these next three years now constitute the buildup to the Rams -- and Chargers -- moving into their vast, opulent, $2.6 billion stadium in Inglewood, California.

The Rams -- 13 years removed from their last playoff appearance, 14 years removed from their last winning season -- want to become legitimate contenders as quickly as possible. Really, though, they want to ensure they are a playoff-caliber team by the time they move into that new stadium. ESPN's Louis Riddick, Mike Sando and Field Yates do not think they will be. At least not as currently constructed. They graded each team's roster, quarterback, draft, coaches and front office, and put it all together to come up with a final score. The result: 27 of the 31 other teams are in better position from 2017 to '19.

The Rams ca not have that. They ca not have a disinterested fan base in the nation's second-largest media market, and they ca not play second fiddle to the Chargers in a stadium they are funding. This week, the last full week before training camp, we are going to take a look at the five things that need to happen so that the Rams are a lot better than the 28th-best team at the conclusion of this three-year stretch. Because, really, that's what it's all about.

No. 5: Solidify the offensive line.

This offseason, the Rams signed a 35-year-old left tackle, Andrew Whitworth, to a three-year, $36 million contract. And they added John Sullivan, a soon-to-be-32-year-old who started one game over the last two years, to be their new center.



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